Some injuries are simply unavoidable. The term occupational hazard is thrown around from time to time and in some cases, an occupational hazard can lead to workplace injuries. It’s important to remember that not all workplace injuries are limited to physical jobs.
Office workers suffer all manner of injuries and workplace accidents. And of course, you’d be just as tore up about it as anyone else, no matter if you’re working in an office or a construction site.
Taking time off to deal with a workplace injury can be expensive and often downright difficult. If your injury is severe, you may want to contact a workers’ compensation lawyer in Nashville. With that in mind, you’ll do yourself good by taking the time to understand your rights for a workers’ compensation claim.
We are often asked: how long can a workers’ compensation claim remain open in Nashville?
First, remember, you CANNOT be fired for claiming workers’ compensation. That would be classified wrongful termination and that is illegal. You can sue an employer for wrongful termination. So remember that you are protected.
The Tennessee government has created laws that protect employees who are injured at work. There is a system of compensation for reduced or lost wages as a result of and due to inability to work as you recover from these injuries.
Once an injury is reported, your employer has 15 days to file and speak with a Workers’ Compensation Specialist. This allows time for proper paperwork from the Department of Labor and Workforce Development to be completed by the supervisor ensuring that your claim can be processed correctly.
The supervisor needs to submit all forms to the insurance provider within one working day after knowing about the injury. The insurance provider should then get in touch with both the employee and employer within two working days to learn more about the case and determine a cause for liability.
In Nashville, the claim must be open within 15 days from notice of the injury. After that, the employer is fined $10,000 and will be fined an additional $1,000 for every day of noncompliance after the 21st day that the injury is reported .
Reporting a work-related injury
Do not be nervous; you cannot be fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim . In Nashville, Tennessee workers’ comp laws provide employees the ability to seek a “benefits review conference” (BRC) for injuries incurred in the workplace that are not supported by the employer for any reason .
It is the obligation of the employee to file a “request for assistance” with the Tennessee Department of Labor. This action can be compared to a personal injury lawsuit for private individuals.
You are entitled to file for a number of benefits, but your eligibility for these benefits will depend on certain conditions and filing requirements. Some of the benefits that you may be entitled to receive include:
- Medical benefits: Payment for all necessary medical treatment related to the injury.
- Temporary total disability benefits: Compensation benefits for the wage lost related to the number of days you were unable to go to work due to the injury. This payment will be given after the treating physician determines that you will be unable to return for work for 7 days or more and it will be equivalent to roughly two-thirds of your average weekly earnings.
- Permanent disability benefits: This is a payment made after you reached maximum medical improvement as determined by the physician and reviewed by the claims adjuster.
- Scheduled injuries: This is payment made for a loss of impairment to a body part for maximum time duration.
- Death benefits: This is payment made to the dependents if the injury resulted to death.
You can request a Benefit Review Conference within one year from the date of your injury or the date your employer paid your medical bills or last disability.
If you don’t reach a settlement, you can file an appeal to the Tennessee Claims Commission where after a hearing, a commissioner will determine if you are eligible for benefits. You can can file a Petition for Benefits Determination to seek the Bureau’s assistance.
Contact a Nashville personal injury law firm if you need additional assistance.
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: Know Your Rights